Age of Worms Adventure Path – The Champion’s Belt Epilogue

A hate-filled wail, carried on the voices of thousands of wights, tears through the air, jolting the party with its unholy resonance. The freshly anointed Apostle of Kyuss surges and undulates its bulk up onto the stone stands of the coliseum and heaves itself through the back wall with a stone-shattering crash. In an instant, wights are pouring through the opening, down the arena steps and over the railing down to the arena floor. As one, the Mercenaries flee down the gaping Abyss in the arena floor left by the ulgurstasta’s emergence.

Within the darkness, the party finds themselves in the domed room that previously held the sleeping monster. Through the double-doors, the team discovers the podium holding the Apostolic Scrolls still stands and no light surrounds them. They are easily snatched up and stuffed into a sack. Roars of rage come from behind the group as wights crowd around the hole in the dome and fume over the height. The party further realizes the depth of Waterdeep’s troubles as they hear one of them intelligently shout, “find rope!”

Uncertain what other traps and dangers lay in this portion of the complex, the Mercenaries work their way back the route they originally took to find this area. It takes quite a bit of time but seems free of wight presence. After a while, the team crosses through the coenoby and up into the arena understructure. The area appears abandoned now, but pools of fresh blood prove the wights have already visited. You recall from lore that those slain at a wight’s hand are cursed to rise as a slave wight under the control of their slayers in less than a minute.

The party finds the route leading up into the arena but decides that is the last place to go. Instead, they roam about a bit until they discover a tunnel leading in the direction of Prendergast’s manor. Taking that path, the party soon finds themselves in the home of the director of the Field of Triumph. The place is in shambles. On a balcony above, a female voice roars in rage and utters what sounds like a command word. The railing blossoms as flame rushes through, over and around it. A trio of wights staggers out of the fire, and one topples from the balcony to land lifeless at your feet. The burned flesh makes you retch as smoke stings your eyes.

Like a ghost, the figure of Aridarye emerges from the swirling smoke above. Her hair is singed, tears streak her face, and barely-contained rage shudders through her body. She still wears a stunning, and revealing, evening gown that is oddly intact despite her disheveled appearance. A mithral buckler adorns her left arm, and she clutches a red-tipped wand in her left hand. In her right, one of the finest rapiers you’ve ever seen. At some point, she has fastened a potion belt and dagger around her slender waist.

Recognition dawns across her angry features, and she rushes down the stairs to your group. In almost a whisper through clenched teeth, tears rolling down her cheeks, Aridarye tells you how she rushed to the manor when the wights appeared to get to her eight-year-old son, Urtos III. She was too late. The noblewoman barely escaped with her life, and her now-undead son slipped off into the growing throng of wights. After barricading herself in her quarters and arming herself, Aridarye emerged with a vengeance and has slain a number of the wights.

She begs you to help her out of the city. There is nothing left for her here. Her son is dead, her husband has become an abomination, and the authorities of Waterdeep will no doubt want to question her about her involvement in this catastrophe. All she has left in life is vengeance. As long as you oppose Kyuss, she swears her assistance and abilities.

Still unsure about Aridarye and her future, the party agrees to allow her to accompany them out of the city—beyond that is a conversation for another time. Out in the streets, chaos has come to the City of Splendors. Undead run rampant, groups of the Town Watch fight valiantly against them, various spellcasters from around the city hurl spells of mage fire and scalding acid upon the hordes. The Apostle of Kyuss is nowhere to be seen, but fragments snatched from passersby indicate a gigantic worm crashed through the streets and into the sewers. The guardsmen who pursued soon returned as shambling undead dripping green worms.

On the flight from the city, the Mercenaries stop at the home of Dagsumn the sage. A notice posted on the door causes them to pause in their tracks. It reads, “Notice: Reward of 1,000 gp for information leading to an arrest and prosecution of the murder(s) of Dagsumn and Kyrss Wands.” With no guards without, the team decides to snoop around. The place has been searched, probably by the killer(s) but also by the watch. Pools of blood reveal where the bodies finally fell, but scorch marks around the premise indicate they did not go down without a fight. Wedged in a corner of two walls, the team discovers a clue unnoticed by the watch—a single saw-like bladed disc. Also, beneath an upturned table, the party finds the following unfinished note attached to a sealed bundle of papers:

“My dear friend Delfen—What your adventurers have stumbled into sickens me to my soul. Every new leaf I turn reveals an even darker secret. Here are my notes. You must take them to our one-time master—although I fear that even he may be ill-equipped for what writhes in all of our futures. Until then…”

With the sounds of the battle approaching, the team scrambles out of the manor and manages to go over the wall of Waterdeep to flee into the countryside. Behind them lay several of their allies, their contact in the city, two escaped foes, and numerous unanswered questions. Ahead lies the road to Daggerford and their long-time confidant, Delfen. Will he help the party contact his former master? What secrets can he reveal? And what of the beautiful and dangerous noblewoman? Is the enemy of mine enemy truly a friend?

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